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How do I Choose the Best Information Science Programs?

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  • Written By: Carol Francois
  • Edited By: Heather Bailey
  • Last Modified Date: 12 November 2018
  • Copyright Protected:
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The best information science programs provide access to staff in a wide range of disciplines, ranging from information science to information technology. There are two types of information science programs: technician and professional. Information science is an interdisciplinary field that includes analysis, classification, storage and retrieval of information. Not to be confused with information technology, many library science schools have refreshed their name to information science.

Information science programs within a community college provide the training necessary to become a technician. This program is typically one to two years in length and focuses on the skills required to work in a library or archive. An information science technician works under the supervision of an information sciences professional or archivist.

The information science programs at the university level are typically master's and doctoral level degrees. These programs focus on classification systems, data organization, and analysis techniques. The master's program is typically two to three years in length and is heavily reliant upon research essays and papers. At the doctoral level, candidates are expected to write a unique thesis on a specific topic.

The best information science programs are ones where you will be both successful and challenged. The course work requires excellent reading, research, and writing skills. Take the time to invest in these particular skills before applying, so you will be successful.

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When evaluating the different information science programs, look for ones that have a strong career center. This industry is small, and it is important to have good contacts in the field to find internship opportunities, as well as full-time positions. Look for programs that offer multiple ways to participate in the industry, ranging from guest lectures to volunteering or cooperative student positions.

Support services are very important when comparing post-secondary education programs. Look at the level of support the program receives from the school, such as bursaries, scholarships, resources, and funding. All of these items are great indicators of the priority of this program within the overall institution.

Another essential aspect to being successful in a program is the availability of student resources. These include counseling services, athletics, clubs, teams, and group activities. Look at the size of the libraries, the quality of the collection, and the availability of staff. The hours of operation and methods for accessing resources are critical parts of any program that most students do not consider until they are already registered.

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